Chromecast: Google in the Living Room, Take Two - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 11:02 AM - Thread Starter
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Google takes another stab at providing your living-room TV with a "smart" home screen thanks to a tiny HDMI dongle called Chromecast. Interested owners of Android phones and tablets, Apple iOS devices, Cromebook, Windows, and Mac OS users can order the newly announced device as of today for $35—a price point that reportedly had reporters audibly gasping at the press event.
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"The Chromecast will launch in the United States first for $35, which garnered an audible (but deserved) gasp from the media audience, a typically jaded bunch at these product announcements." - ZDNet


Chromecast is a dongle that plugs directly into an available HDMI port.


Essentially, Chromecast links up to Android and iOS devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and Chromebooks. It also works with Mac and PC computers that have Chrome installed. It plugs into any HDMI port and uses USB power.
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"Measuring in at just two inches in length, Chromecast runs a "simplified version" of Chrome OS. It plugs into any HDMI input port and "simply disappears behind your TV." - ZDNet


Here is a more realistic depiction of the wiring. photo source: CNET

The diminutive dongle works by drawing content from laptops, desktops, Google and iOS devices—including Youtube, Netflix, and Google Play, Vudu, Hulu... anything that plays in a Chrome browser—then streams it directly to the Chromecast device from the cloud, right into an HDMI-equipped HDTV or receiver. This results in full-resolution playback of video content, unlike Apple's airplay which uses direct streaming/mirroring from an iOS device. With Google's approach, the source device can be turned off without stopping playback.

The dongle itself uses a basic version of Google's Chrome OS, giving HDTVs a degree of "smart" functionality. According to ZDNet, not all of that functionality is activated yet—but that's not stopping Google from selling it.
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"There are a few features still in the infamous beta mode, meaning users can't expect things to work so seamlessly out of the box." - ZDNet

Google usually proves to be a disruptive force in every market it enters. I already ordered a Chromecast within minutes of its announcement—at the minimum, it will be nice to have it when I stay in a hotel with free Wi-Fi. On the other hand, if it really interfaces well with my PCs, Android phone and my iPad, it could earn a dedicated HDMI slot on my Vizio HDTV. Either way, I expect to review it here on AVS it shortly after I receive it.

Is Chromecast a game-changer or another Google set-top box boondoggle?


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post #2 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 12:18 PM
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I ordered one immediately as well. I have some doubts, and still believe the solution is too limiting for many of us, but I'm all in, all Google so it's a natural.

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post #3 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 12:53 PM
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Ordered. Google Play's website was saying it was "Coming Soon" and I was unable to order it initially. I spam refreshed my screen and the button to purchase it activated.
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post #4 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:05 PM
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It also includes 3 free months of Netflix for new and existing members - making it more of a steal smile.gif
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post #5 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post

It also includes 3 free months of Netflix for new and existing members - making it more of a steal smile.gif

Thanks for the heads up. It's true, so I added it to the article!
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post #6 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:19 PM
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Google - Absolutely not.
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post #7 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:21 PM
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Not quite there to replace my Apple TV (No mirroring of mobile device or streaming from desktop that I can tell, but the possibility is there I think.) but I love the start! $35? I smell loss leader. Well done Google. :-)


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post #8 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by chirpie View Post

No mirroring of mobile device or streaming from desktop

It doesn't mirror, but you can play anything on this you can play in the mobile/desktop Chrome browser.
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post #9 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:26 PM
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Is this MHL or does it use and AC adapter?

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post #10 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:26 PM
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Is this MHL or does it use and AC adapter?
It's USB/AC powered.
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post #11 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post

It doesn't mirror, but you can play anything on this you can play in the mobile/desktop Chrome browser.

Cool, missed that part.

Does anyone know how the 3 free months of Netflix works? Is it a specific code? I.E., can I buy two of these and get 6 months free?


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post #12 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:33 PM
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They email you the promo code for Netflix when your device ships - so it's safe to assume you would need 2 emails for 2 separate orders and then who knows if Netflix would say 'this account has already used this promo' - so you might then need to sign up for another Netflix account.
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post #13 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:37 PM
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ordered with amazon prime. Cant go wrong with 35 bucks. let see. Would love to play amazon movies on tv that doenst have it
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post #14 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:37 PM
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Man, I really want it, but I just wish there was a way for it to see my library of movies/music I have on my computer. If it did that, I'd order 3 of them, Netflix be damned.


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post #15 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:39 PM
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Sit tight - there is an API so an app that can see your library can enable support to push media to this smile.gif
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post #16 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post

Sit tight - there is an API so an app that can see your library can enable support to push media to this smile.gif

I know, that's why I left "possibility" in my first post above. ^_^ I just get hugely impatient when something great comes along and it's just so close to meeting my exact needs. ;-)
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post #17 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:56 PM
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Possibly really dumb question, but will this work directly plugged into an A/V receiver? Otherwise what's the point if you can't pump the audio through your system?
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post #18 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 01:57 PM
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What is the compatibility with Blackberry OS 10 running Chrome browser?

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post #19 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 02:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Susilo View Post

What is the compatibility with Blackberry OS 10 running Chrome browser?

Google only mentioned iOS and Android, not a peep about Microsoft or Blackberry. Reporters have already asked the question, are waiting for an answer.

Correction. It also works with Chrome in Windows and Mac OS
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"On the traditional PC side, it supports Chrome on recent versions of Windows and Mac OS X: users can stream directly from the browser, then go on with their normal computer use as video plays."
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post #20 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 02:10 PM
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Ordered, but oddly didn't have a spot to type my street address. It only has fields for Apt, City, State. What's up with that?


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post #21 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 02:18 PM
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Ordered, but oddly didn't have a spot to type my street address. It only has fields for Apt, City, State. What's up with that?

google already knows where you live, it's just a formality... tongue.gif

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post #22 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 02:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post

Google only mentioned iOS and Android, not a peep about Microsoft or Blackberry. Reporters have already asked the question, are waiting for an answer.

The Blackberry 10 OS is just running virtualized Android apps (in reagrds to Chrome and such) IIRC, so it seems like it should work in regards to that (I'm guessing here). There are no Windows Phone plans at this time from everything I've read.
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Correction. It also works with Chrome in Windows and Mac OS

It also supports the Chrome Pixel.
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post #23 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 02:23 PM
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google already knows where you live, it's just a formality... tongue.gif

LOL. I made the exact same joke in my head when I first thought about it. ^_^


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post #24 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 02:23 PM
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That is correct. BB10 is running sideloaded Android apps. BB7 runs actual Chrome for BBOS.

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post #25 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 02:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post

It doesn't mirror, but you can play anything on this you can play in the mobile/desktop Chrome browser.

Which, most inconveniently, excludes photos or videos, audio files outside of Google Play...
Quote:
giving HDTVs true "smart" functionality

Smarter, yes. "Smart", not quite yet.

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post #26 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 02:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nethawk View Post

Which, most inconveniently, excludes photos or videos, audio files outside of Google Play

They show it displaying photos via the browser and showed it playing Vimeo via the browser during the event - so your statement is proven unfounded and incorrect.
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post #27 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 03:34 PM
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I read somewhere that the Chromecast device can automatically switch the TV to the HDMI input that it is plugged into. Will it automatically switch back to the previous input when you're done Chromecasting?
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post #28 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 03:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by staknhalo View Post

They show it displaying photos via the browser and showed it playing Vimeo via the browser during the event - so your statement is proven unfounded and incorrect.
Well, he misspoke I believe when he said "only from Google Play", I think he was trying to say that it won't show photos from sd card or hard drive at launch, (though someone could easily make an app for it, maybe Astro browser will add in the functionality on Android). However, who in the heck doesn't have their photos in the cloud these days? It will show anything from the Chrome browser, so just go to your G+ photos or Tumbler or wherever you keep your pics.
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post #29 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 03:55 PM
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I wonder how good the video quality is and whether it supports subtitle on netflix....
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post #30 of 476 Old 07-24-2013, 04:24 PM
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Can't beat this for 35 bucks.
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